passage of General King's division from Suffolk, Norfolk, &c. No troops have been reported going up till Thursday, 13th instant, when a large steamer, with probably a regiment aboard, ascended the river. About a fortnight since, twenty- four steamers were reported passing down, apparently loaded. It was about the time troops were said to have been landed at Old Point for Charleston. As I have not been able to hear of them further, this was probably the case. The Eleventh Army Corps, General Howard, was sent back about the 1st instant, and reported to have been disbanded and distributed. It was very much reduced, and General Stuart thinks did not exceed 1,000 men for duty. Ascout, recently from Washington, reports that the order for its disbandment was rescinded on the 7th instant by General Hlleck, and that it was ordered to Charleston. Major Mosby, recently from Alexandria, says that up to the time he left there none had embarked at that place.
Colonel White, from Loudoun, reports 10,000 Federal troops passing Fredericktown toward Washington from the west. I can learn of no troops joining General Meade since General King's divisio, which is posted at Centreville, excepting conscripts. General Meade was in Washington on the 15th instant. His army is posted along the Orange and Alexandria Railroad, in Fauquier and Prince William. His cavalry is guarding each flank and picketing the Rappahannock from Waterloo to Falmouth; none have yet gone below the latter place. Up to the 17th, no operations had been commenced at Aquia, nor had any force been in the vicinity either by land or water. Alarge amount of timber, said to have been shipped to Aquia, had not arrived, nor can I hear of a large quantity of stone shipped to a point unknown. Supply transports are passing up and down the Potomac, but not in unusual numbers. The enemy's attention seems to be now devoted to the capture of Charleston, which I trust he will never get. As soon as I can get the vacancies in the army filled, and the horses and men recruited a little, if General Meade does not move, I wish to attack him.
I have received another appliocation from General Jenkins to join me with his brigade. I should like much to have him if he can be spared, and would replace it by General Davis', which he thinks would eneble him to refill this regiment [brigade!], if you approve it.
Iam, with great respect, your obedient servant,
R. E. LEE.
RICHMOND, August22, 1863.
General R. E. LEE,
Orange Court- House, Va.:
The following received through the signal office here, from agent in Maryland, dated August 20:
I learned from a gentleman, on Tuesday, direct from Washington, and in position to know how things are moving, that it was generally believed there that the Army of the Potomac will be reduced 50,000 to enforce the draft in New York. It looks very much like it, from the great numbers of troops already gone down the Potomac, and there are evidences of more to come. Ther are large steamers now up the river, and will return to- morrow.
The signal officer on the Potomac states that from certain indications the troops could not have gone farther than Fort Monroe.
Adjutant and Inspector General.